About ‘Cape May Warbler and Balsam’?


The panting “Cape May Warbler and Balsam” is part of Robert Bateman’s pamphlet “Hope and Wild Apples: Making Choices for a Life in Nature”. In this painting, there is a close-up view of a small yellow bird perched on the very top of a Balsam Fir.

What does Robert Bateman mean by it?

This scene expresses Green Hero Robert Bateman’s concern about what is happening in the natural world. In particular, the chemical spraying of infected Spruce trees.

According to Bateman, this approach has only encouraged the fast-growing Balsam Fir even more because, ironically, the spruce budworm actually prefers the Balsam Fir. So, chemical spraying of spruce trees has had a counter-productive effect. Even worse is the fact that chemical spraying is killing countless beneficial insects, fish and birds.

And so, the Warbler is significantly perched on the ubiquitous Balsam Fir, anticipating the return of balance to nature.